Will ICC and Chief Executive Manu Sawhney reach an amicable resolution after misconduct investigation?

The International Cricket Council has sent Chief Executive Manu Sawhney on leave after an investigation was conducted by UK based accounting firm PriceWaterHouseCoopers (PWC). Sawhney, who replaced Dave Richardson after the 2019 World Cup has one more year left for his term to end but might be expected to resign before 2022. The investigation has preliminarily concluded that Sawhney’s behavior has been against the federation’s way of leading operations and allegations have been made for his alleged “abrasive behavior”. The 56 year old was sent on leave on Tuesday (March 9th) even though he has not been attending office. According to media reports, Sawhney’s “authoritarian style of functioning” is a stark contrast to his predecessor Richardson’s inclusive approach and has not been well received by employees. Some cricket boards around the world are also reportedly unhappy with his backing of Imran Khwaja of Singapore for the election of a new chairman, when Khwaja and Greg Barclay of New Zealand were in contention to replace Shashank Manhohar. Some of the bigger boards are also unhappy after he backed ICC’s decision of asking boards to bid and pay fees for hosting events in the next cycle. Media reports suggest that the BCCI, Cricket Australia and the England and Wales Cricket Board have made their displeasure clear at board meetings. Sawhney has also expressed his concerns that the World T20, scheduled to be held in India in October and November may not go according to plan due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Another proposal by Sawhney is for at least one ICC flagship tournament every year from 2023 to 2031 has also not got a vote from the ‘Big Three’ Cricket boards. It remains to be seen whether Sawhney and the ICC would find an amicable resolution to the ongoing investigation, but in the event that Sawhney chooses not to resign, the two could be held in a long drawn removal procedure by the Board of Directors.


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